Peloton is ready to end its battle with regulators over Tread+ safety issues. The fitness equipment maker has agreed to pay just over $19 million to settle Consumer Product Safety Commission charges that it broke the law through its response to both injury reports and the ensuing recall. The company started receiving reports of people, pets and objects being pulled under the Tread+ as far back as December 2018, but didn't "immediately" report them as required by law, according to the CPSC. By the time Peloton filed a report, there were over 150 known incidents that included a child's death and 13 injuries.
The firm is also accused of knowingly distributing treadmills after the recall began in May 2021. Couriers delivered 38 units, according to the CPSC. On top of the payout, the deal requires that Peloton institute a compliance program and provide yearly
In a statement to Engadget, a spokesperson said Peloton was "pleased" to settle with the CPSC and would cooperate on improving product safety. The representative added that the company was still seeking approval for a rear guard that would bolster Tread+ safeguards.
The settlement comes more than a year after a public fight over the Tread+ design. When the CPSC issued a warning against using the treadmill after reports of injuries, Peloton claimed the alert was "inaccurate and misleading" and insisted that customers could still use the exercise gear as long as they followed instructions. The company agreed to voluntarily recall its hardware weeks later, but that came after 72 reported incidents at the time.
Peloton has a clear incentive to call a truce. The brand had a terrible 2022, with plunging sales as the pandemic recovery saw would-be customers visit gyms or otherwise step outside. It turned to a number of tactics in a bid to trim costs and boost sales, including machine price cuts (offset by a subscription fee hike) and a switch to third-party manufacturing. The settlement both ends the threat of further legal trouble and lets Peloton focus on rebuilding its business, including the possible return of the Tread+ in question.